Cynthia Marie Randolph
Cynthia Marie Randolph, 24, arrested in connection with the deaths of her two young children after the children died in the car from heat exposure, seen in undated booking photo received by Parker County Sheriff's Office in Weatherford, Texas - File Photo Parker County Sheriff's Office/Handout via REUTERS

A Texas woman, whose two children died of heat exposure after she left them in a hot car last month, has been arrested.

According to Reuters, Cynthia Marie Randolph (24) was being held on Saturday on $200,000 (£156,286) bail for the deaths of her two-year-old daughter Juliet and 16-month-old son Cavanaugh. She has been charged with two first-degree felony counts of injury to a child causing serious bodily injury.

Randolph locked the children as she wanted to teach her daughter a "lesson" after she refused to leave the car, authorities said.

The woman then went inside the house and smoked marijuana before falling asleep for between two to three hours. When she woke up, she found the children unresponsive inside the car and broke the window to make it look like an accident, the sheriff's office statement said.

Both were pronounced dead at about 4:30pm local time (10:30pm BST) on 26 May. Police said that the temperature outside on that day was about 35.5C.

The Parker County Sheriff's Office says that "throughout multiple interviews, Randolph created several variations of the events which led to the death of her children".

In her initial statement, she said her children had entered the vehicle on their own, locking themselves inside. Randolph said she had been folding laundry and watching television in her rural home west of Fort Worth while the two played in a back porch.

After noticing the children were missing, she went searching for them and found them in the car. She even broke the window to rescue them.

Randolph eventually admitted that she had found the children playing in the car at about 12:15pm on that day.

When her two-year-old daughter refused to leave the vehicle, she closed the door "to teach her daughter a 'lesson', thinking 'she could get herself and her brother out of car when ready,'" the sheriff's office said in a news release.